From Sail to Steam to … the Stars? How Innovation in the Commercial Space Industry is Impacting the Maritime Sector and Coast Guard
Maritime attorney Sean Pribyl authored an article for gCaptain discussing the increasingly blurred lines between commercial space and maritime following SpaceX's newest "autonomous drone ship" (a term synonymous with “autonomous vessels” or Maritime Autonomous Surface Ships). Mr. Pribyl signals that the maritime industry should take heed as the commercial space and space tourism industries are slowly and gradually permeating the marine sector and bringing with them innovation and advanced autonomy. In this article he covers the regulatory gaps and hurdles that could hinder seamless integration of commercial space and autonomy safely into the marine transportation system without stifling innovation. He emphasizes that legal and policy discussions should remain at the forefront to ensure safety and that Congress must allocate adequate resources for the Coast Guard to meet statutory missions combined with emerging demands.